Risk Management

CFO Resigns, Company Settles Suit

A new Willbros Group CFO is approved by the board; class-action settlement will be funded by insurance.
Marie LeoneAugust 10, 2006

Willbros Group announced on Thursday that Warren Williams resigned as senior vice president and chief financial officer.

In a separate announcement, the independent energy contractor said it agreed to settle a class-action lawsuit accusing the company and three present and former officers and directors of making a series of false and misleading statements and a “scheme to defraud.” The charges of misrepresentation and fraudulent activity related to James Tillery, the former president of the company’s international units in Nigeria and Bolivia. Certain alleged accounting errors, the restatement of past financial results, and alleged Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations were cited in the suit.

The other two individuals being sued were Williams and Chief Executive Officer Michael Curran.

The settlement will be funded by the company’s insurance carrier, and will include the dismissal of all claims without any liability or wrongdoing attributed to the company or any other defendant.

The company announced that it completed a search for a new CFO, who has been approved by the board. In the press statement, company officials did not name the individual, but said that the new finance chief would be introduced in the immediate future.

The statement did indicate that the new CFO previously held senior finance and accounting positions at a major international engineering and construction company—most recently as vice president, finance—and has over 25 years experience in the engineering and construction industry.

Williams will provide consulting services to Willbros until the end of 2006 to help ensure a smooth transition, the company added. “We would like to wish Warren the best in his future endeavors, and thank him for his contributions over the six years he has been with the firm,” said Curran, in a statement.